August 18, 2023
Fellowship is an integral final piece of training after residency for orthopedic surgeons. Brian Fisher, MD, is an alumni of the Washington University Orthopedics Foot and Ankle Fellowship Program.
Fellowship Alumni - Brian Fisher, MD
Now an attending in Greenville, South Carolina, Dr. Fisher remembers his year as a WashU Ortho foot and ankle fellow fondly and profoundly. "My year in fellowship really helped me solidify skills and learn tips and trips to take forward into my own practice." Dr. Fisher thinks the WashU Ortho foot and ankle fellowship sets itself apart for a few key reasons: autonomy, breadth of pathology, and comprehensive orthopedics.
WashU Ortho Experience
Dr. Fisher shares the fellowship is set up in a way that the fellow has a great amount of personal responsibility and decision making. "Not only are you seeing patients in the clinic, you're also leading charge in the operating room." It is our goal to develop the curious and capable foot and ankle specialists like Dr. Fisher, "This is where you start making high-level decisions without the oversight of faculty."
Since our fellows are hands-on in every level of practice, this includes being on trauma call. Paid at the same level as faculty, the experience of training at a level one trauma center involves fast-paced decisions and actions. "The breadth of pathology is vast and comprehensive," Dr. Fisher shares, "From routine ankle arthritis cases, to ankle replacements, and complex deformities, the fellow gets experience with it all." With about 900 foot and ankle surgery cases per year, there's a little bit of everything. "Some fellowships are more niche in the conditions treated, but at WashU Ortho, you get training in all aspects of foot and ankle conditions."
Dr. Fisher is appreciative of the mentors he had in the program and their commitment to his development and practice. Not only do fellows have access to acclaimed clinical mentors, but also top leaders in orthopedic research. "Anyone interested in research experience has great opportunity here as well," Dr. Fisher explains. Research opportunities are available for basic science or bench to bedside clinical projects.
Being in St. Louis
After training at Texas Tech for medical school and Dartmouth for orthopedic residency, Dr. Fisher and his family made the decision to relocate to St. Louis for his fellowship year. "We really enjoyed how family-friendly the city is," he shared. He and his wife have four children whom they loved taking to St. Louis parks, museums, and sporting events. Their family had few favorite restaurants too, including Fitz's and Fire and Smoke.
His wife regards their time in St. Louis highly. She shares, "I found St. Louis to be impressive city, especially for families with young children, like myself. The area offers many free attractions, wonderful public parks and fabulous new restaurants to try. Our favorites included the zoo, the botanical gardens, The Magic House, and the unique City Museum. Knowing my husband was going to be away at work for long hours during the week, it was nice to live somewhere that offered a variety of places to take my kids during the day that offered not only entertainment for them, but were also educational. St. Louis was a wonderful stop on our medical journey, and a place my kids still ask to return to and visit."
Learn more about foot and ankle fellowship training at Washington University Orthopedics and get a feel for all St. Louis has to offer.